We had some beautiful tulips in our garden.
Those tulips brought me more joy. But guess who forgot to water them? Oh yes, I did, and I was heartbroken about it when I went out to the garden days later only to find they had withered and died. I also happen to live in Southern California, a year-round coastal desert climate, and we have been experiencing a very prolonged drought in our state. A drive anywhere reveals seemingly endless stretches of brown where lush green grasses used to be.
I got to thinking about these things, as the Good Lord will use every means necessary to get our attention. I could not help but be reminded that no matter where we live if we do not tend to things that grow, they cannot survive. No water, no green, no food, flowers!
My soul clings to the dust; revive me according to your word.
What a faithful heavenly Father we have to remind us in so many ways to depend on Him and His word, or we cannot grow, we cannot live the life He would have us live. The soul will wither.
My lesson learned: flowers are beautiful, and they flourish when nourished. But left unattended, they will surely wither and perish. The same truth applies to the mind, soul, and spirit without regular “planting and feeding” with the Word of God. Seems obvious on the surface, but it is so easy to let that truth get away from us, as happened with my lovely tulips!
Author Dennis Rainey, co-founder of FamilyLife.com, points out that it is also critical to pull weeds from “the garden” of our soul. Referring to Jesus’ parable of the soils found in Mark 4:10 – 20, he highlights three “weeds” that can choke our growth and our happiness if we allow it:
- worries of the world and anxieties,
- deceptiveness of worldly wealth, and
- a constant desire for more.1
In each case, the way to “pull those weeds,” prevent them from hindering our growth, is by daily prayer and filling the mind and spirit with God’s thoughts and promises found in His Word. If I always want my flowers to bloom, I better remember to feed and water! If I want more joy in my daily life, and not be choked by weeds of anxieties, I need to remember to pray and plant the seed of God’s word without fail.
1 Rainey, D. (2006). Pulling Weeds from the Garden of Our Lives. Retrieved from FamilyLife.com website: http://www.familylife.com/articles/topics/faith/essentials/growing-in-your-faith/pulling-weeds-from-the-garden-of-our-lives